10 Best Inexpensive Acoustic Guitars for Beginners.

If you’re looking for an affordable acoustic guitar for a beginner, but not one that’s cheaply made then you’ve come to the right place. There are hundreds of cheap guitars out there, with low price tags and low quality. These aren’t them.

These acoustic guitars offer good quality, and great value for their respective price tags.

Many of the guitars on this list might be considered the best acoustic guitars for beginners, but they also make an excellent choice for a backup or travel guitar for the experienced player as well. Worried about bringing your Martin D-16GT on a camping trip for a week? Why not pick up the Seagull S6 instead?

To put it simply, these are good acoustic guitars for cheap.

Without further ado, I present to you….

10 inexpensive acoustic guitars for beginners.

1. Seagull S6


Seagull acoustic guitars are made in Canada and come highly regarded. They offer a beautiful sound at an excellent value. The Seagull S6 has a mahogany back and sides, and a solid cedar top. The Seagull S6 blends the warmth of mahogany with the crisp definition of maple.

The rosewood fretboard is easy on the fingers, while the Tusq nut and saddle provide good tone and stable tuning.

This acoustic guitar also features a double action truss rod to help keep it in tune over the years.

At around $399 it may seem a bit pricey, but it it well worth the money. It’s not a cheap guitar, but it’s a good guitar and one of the best in the under $500 price range. I would not recommend it for someone who is looking to try his hand at learning guitar and may not stick with it, but it’s an excellent 1st guitar and a great investment for someone willing to put in the practice time needed to play well.

Here’s a demo/promo video of the Seagull S6 in action:

2. Yamaha FG800

Yamaha-FG700S-soundThe Yamaha FG800 is significantly lower in price (about half the price of the Seagull S6), but still a very good beginner acoustic guitar. It features a solid Nato back and sides, Solid Sitka Spruce top, rosewood fingerboard and die-cast tuners and a high-gloss natural finish.

Yamaha’s legendary value and quality make are present in this very affordable entry-level 6-string acoustic guitar.

Check out the Yamaha FG800 in action:


3. Takamine GD20-NS


The Takamine GD20-NS is a Dreadnought body style acoustic guitar and features a Cedar top with synthetic bone nut and bridge saddle, rosewood head cap, and pearloid dot inlays. The back and sides are Mahogany. This is definitely the beginner line of Takamine guitars and while it does not feature the superior sound qualities of the higher end models, it doesn’t feature their higher end price tag either.

Most people agree that the GD20-NS gives you pretty good bang for the buck and makes an excellent acoustic guitar for beginners.

With a beautiful sound, sturdy construction and a pleasing look, the Takamine GD20-NS is a solid beginner guitar offering plenty of room to grow. At  under $300, it’s a solid buy.

Here’s a demo of the it in action:


4. Fender CD-140S


The Fender CD-140S is a full bodied Dreadnought acoustic guitar featuring solid Spruce top and laminated mahogany back and sides. It’s a lower-end Fender and may not have the superb workmanship of the higher priced models, the solid Spruce top and Rosewood headstock and bridge with compensated saddle make it an appealing beginner model.

The CD-140S dreadnought provides a full, resonant sound at a great value (currently under $200).

The 2011 upgrade gives this model a new tortoise shell pickguard and mother-of-pearl rosette design.

Check out the Fender CD-140s acoustic guitar in action here:

5. Epiphone DR-100

Epiphone-DR-100-brstThe Epiphone DR-100 acoustic guitar features a Spruce top, Rosewood fingerboard and Mahogany back and sides giving it an overall balanced tone.

The DR-100 is considered by many to be strictly an acoustic guitar for beginners  – meaning it will not be long before the serious player wants to trade up. But at less than $100, it’s a fine starter guitar for people who aren’t sure they will have the desire or aptitude to stick with playing.

It’s available in 3 different finishes: Ebony, Natural, and Vintage Sunburst.

6. Ibanez PC15NT

acoustic guitars for beginners - Ibanez - AC30NT

The Ibanez PC15NT is a worthy entry in the beginner guitar series, and while you can find better acoustic guitars out there, few are as good at this price. It features a solid Engelmann Spruce top, and Mahogany back and sides. It’s smaller body doesn’t take much away from it’s loudness or crispness. It’s similar to Martins and Taylors in terms of sound and retails for around $150.

You do get what you pay for though, and the PC15NT is geared toward finger picking or soloing. It’s ok for strumming and rhythm work, but not as well balanced for each technique as some other guitars on this list.

See demo:

7. Fender DG-8S

Fender-DG-8SThe Fender DG-8S features a solid Spruce top, and laminated Mahogany back and sides. It has a Rosewood bridge with compensated saddle. The saddle and nut are plastic.

If it sounds a little light on construction, it’s because it is. This is a definite starter guitar – read: you will be trading this in if you pursue playing past the basics. That’s ok though, because this is a great acoustic guitar for people looking to try their hand at guitar playing but who aren’t sure how far they want to go with it.

It’s usually sold in a starter kit package, including things like a chromatic electronic tuner, instructional DVD, strings, picks and strap. Basically, everything you need to sit down and start learning. All for under $200.

There are cheaper starter kits out there, but they’re…well, cheap. In the right hands the Fender DG-8S can really sing (and make a great gift for Christmas 😉 ):

8. Martin LX1

Martin-LX1The Martin LX1 is a 3/4 size acoustic guitar which features a solid Sapele top, back and sides. It also has a Stratabond modified low oval neck and Gotoh nickel-plated tuners with the classic C.F. Martin script logo on headstock.

Being 3/4 size it’s perfect for a travel guitar as well as a practice guitar for beginning students or younger students with smaller hands. It retails for under $300 and includes a gig bag. That might seem like a lot for a 3/4 guitar, but it’s a very good quality 3/4 guitar.

Here’s a demo:

9. Baby Taylor

Baby-TaylorThe Baby Taylor is another 3/4 size dreadnought acoustic guitar and like the Martin LX1, it’s perfect for younger players and those with smaller hands. It’s in the same price range as the LX1 (under $300), and while it’s a good guitar, it’s not as good as higher end Taylors. That’s also true of the Martin LX1 though. It’s simply difficult to provide a high quality instrument at the lower price point.

Don’t get me wrong, the Baby Taylor is still a solid guitar a great 3/4 Dreadnought. It’s got a solid Mahogany top, and Sapele back sides. It’s also got a Tusq nut and saddle for great tone in such a tiny package. A gig bag is generally included also, since it’s a non-standard size.

Here’s a nice demo of the Baby Taylor acoustic guitar:


10. Washburn WD10 Series

Washburn-WD10-SeriesThe Washburn WD10 Series has a solid Spruce top and wood Rosette with bone nut and saddle. It may be the bone saddle and nut, or maybe it’s better construction but this guitar sounds like a guitar twice it’s price. That and the fact that its price is less than $200 make this a great acoustic guitar for the beginner or as a backup or travel guitar.

You could do far worse for $250 than this great looking guitar with a nice bright tone and strong mid range.

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  • TB April 3, 2012 at 2:28 pm

    Man, I wish I had a kid who wanted to play guitar, then they could be in a rock band and I could tour with them! I’d just fix their bus or something along the way. 🙂

  • kate July 28, 2013 at 3:41 am

    what about the fender cd-60sb? i found it offered with a case….is it in the same league as the dg or no?
    im desperately trying to figure out what to get but there are no music stores where i live so i have to buy online. the only one we had burned down and the guy is too poor to rebuild his business.

    • Mike August 1, 2013 at 9:45 am


      Yes, the cd-60sb is a great guitar for the price. It’s actually better than the dg, but also more expensive. If it’s in your price range, and available in your location then you’ve made a good choice (IMO). 😀

      Thanks for stopping by!

  • Jose Carrilho July 28, 2013 at 9:05 pm


    Thanks for the article. The videos help alto.
    I’ve been reading a couple of reviews and opinions.
    Probably will go for the Yamaha. I also read about Cort. But it’s easier to find the Yamaha here in Lisbon.

    Take care,


    • Mike August 1, 2013 at 9:48 am

      Hi José,

      Thanks for reading and thanks for taking the time to comment! It’s much appreciated.

      You’re right about the Yamaha… they’re everywhere! 🙂

  • John Hardin August 19, 2013 at 2:50 pm

    I recently was in the market for a low cost acoustic, but did not want to sacrifice sound or playability. I played most of the guitars you mentioned here and ended up with a bit of an odd ball guitar. I bought an Ibanez AC240, solid mahogany top, mahogany sides and back. It has a 45mm nut so has great spacing for finger picking. I just love the mahogany sound of it and the great neck. Everyone who has picked it up and played it has fallen in love with it. I bought it as a practice guitar when on vacation, and it has become my go to guitar. I think they are 299 new, and i bought my on craigslist for 100.

  • Bojie Wang February 15, 2014 at 1:04 am

    How about the ashton d20?

    • Mike February 16, 2014 at 9:00 pm

      Yeah, the Ashton is fine as long as you are ok with the minimal embellishments. It has a nice, bright sound and can be found for less than $100 USD. Definitely a worthy consideration, but not as warm a sound as some of the others.

  • Dan@gmail.com July 13, 2014 at 3:04 pm

    Is the Esteban model g200 is it a good beginner guitar

    • Mike July 14, 2014 at 7:19 pm

      Not really. It’s cheap, but it’s also cheaply made and likely to make learning more difficult and less enjoyable. You’d be better off with the Fender DG-8S, Epiphone DR-100 or spending a little more up front for one of the others on this list. You’ll get a better made guitar, and it won’t go out of tune on you as easily.

  • Eric September 18, 2014 at 2:50 am

    This is a great article! Thanks! Fender DG8S or CD-140S?

    • Mike September 18, 2014 at 10:05 pm

      Thanks Eric!

      DG8S or CD-140S? The CD-140S is a bit better guitar, but the DG8S comes with everything you need to start playing.., but you could pick up a snark tuner for less than $15, and some picks for cheap and use YouTube for video lesson. You’d spend a bit more, but get a better guitar in the end.

  • Jeremy October 29, 2014 at 3:03 pm

    I agree that the Seagull S6 is the best bang for the buck on this list. Better yet is the Blueridge BR40 and better than that are any of the Teton Guitar models. Totally affordable and they sound ridiculously good.

  • Melody December 5, 2014 at 12:15 pm

    Ok, so what would you suggest for a 4 year old? I am not ready to spend $100, but I want something better than a toy one…

    • Mike December 7, 2014 at 9:44 pm

      Hello Melody,

      It’s awesome that your son is interested in learning guitar, and it’s great that you want to help him!

      A crappy guitar can be such a bad experience, so it’s cool that he wants a better one. The thing to keep in mind is that it’s very hard to find a good guitar for much less than $100, but here are a couple that are less than $100, but not too cheap to play.

      Hohner HC03 3/4-Size Classical Acoustic Guitar
      The classical guitar uses nylon strings, so they would be easier on his fingers.

      Hohner HW03 3/4 Sized Steel String Acoustic Guitar

      I got my daughter the HW03 for Christmas last year, and I find myself playing it quite a lot too. Hohner makes very good guitars for kids, or just for traveling when you don’t want a full size guitar.

      Thanks for writing, and best of luck to you and your son!


    • Mike December 7, 2014 at 9:46 pm

      Hello Melody,

      It’s awesome that your son is interested in learning guitar, and it’s great that you want to help him!

      A crappy guitar can be such a bad experience, so it’s cool that he wants a better one. The thing to keep in mind is that it’s very hard to find a good guitar for much less than $100, but here are a couple that are less than $100, but not too cheap to play.

      Hohner HC03 3/4-Size Classical Acoustic Guitar (http://middle8reviews.com/go/hohner-hc03-34-size-classical-acoustic-guitar/)

      The classical guitar uses nylon strings, so they would be easier on his fingers.

      Hohner HW03 3/4 Sized Steel String Acoustic Guitar(http://middle8reviews.com/go/hohner-hw03-34-sized-steel-string-acoustic-guitar/)

      I got my daughter the HW03 for Christmas last year, and I find myself playing it quite a lot too. Hohner makes very good guitars for kids, or just for traveling when you don’t want a full size guitar.

      Thanks for writing, and best of luck to you and your son!


  • Jenira December 25, 2014 at 4:28 pm

    Hello, great article!

    I want to start learning how to play but I need to first prove that I can stick to it. I was wondering if you could help me out.

    The guitars mentioned above are quite pricey; I’m looking for a relatively good guitar around $100. I know a guitar that is worth $100 won’t promise me everything but if you could just recommend some guitars that are good enough to start learning all the basics, it would sure help me out!

    Thank you!

    • Mike January 2, 2015 at 7:06 am

      Hi Jenira!

      There are a couple on the list in your price range: The Epiphone DR-100 is about $99 and is a well made guitar for that price. The Ibanez AC300 is another good one on the list. You could also try a smaller guitar by Hohner, the Hohner HW03 3/4. That’s less than $90, but a good guitar. It’s smaller too, so easy to pick up and take wherever you go…

      Good luck, and thanks for stopping by!

  • Mike March 22, 2015 at 11:42 pm

    I’m looking at the epiphany pro-1 plus. Any thoughts??

  • San August 5, 2015 at 3:52 am

    Any thoughts on Greg Bennett guitars? Particularly G 100S?

  • Rachel August 29, 2015 at 6:34 pm

    Hi just purchased a cort AF510 and basically as a fairly competent beginner I would love to hear your thoughts on this guitar, I was told in the shop it was the best sounding guitar for its budget price?

    • Samuel T. Cummins October 18, 2016 at 3:28 pm

      Great list for beginners, Acoustic guitars are a great starting point for most beginner guitarist. I finally decided to get a decent guitar after years of trying to play an unplayable instrument. I’d heard that the S6 is an excellent beginner’s guitar and it has arrived and sounds great: It’s very resonant and has a nice action, and the construction is beautiful. To my untrained ear it sounds as good as some much more expensive instruments.

  • eric crayon May 23, 2016 at 9:17 am

    I think Yamaha’s FG700S is the picture of affordable quality, and for that reason alone it deserves the top spot onthe list of best beginner acoustic guitars. At just under $200, it is quite easy on the pocketbook; but its features are impressive. While clearly aimed at beginners, this guitar sounds and feels quite professional. It is nearly impossible to beat it for the price.

    This guitar comes standard with a rosewood fretboard, die-cast tuners, and binding. Those are all things that you would expect from a more expensive guitar, but not necessarily from a guitar costing $200.

    The most impressive thing about this guitar, however, is its top. Its top is solid maple rather than laminate, which drastically increases the tone. The maple provides a lot of clarity, while the rosewood fretboard softens the tone slightly. The result is certainly impressive.

    Most owners report good playability right out of the box. Combined with the impressive tone, that makes the FG700S the best acoustic guitar for beginners of almost any kind.

    • Jon Headrick November 26, 2016 at 11:50 pm

      I also support eric, what he says about Yamaha FG700s. Its a nice looking handy guitar to play for the first time. Under the price range 500 it is the best guitar in my eyes.

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